Laid off Iraq war veteran now fighting cancer

While he’s waging a fight against stage-4 colon cancer Tyler Nielsen is intent on letting others know how to avoid what he is going through. As part of that effort an event Saturday at Jeanie Stevens Park in Tremonton aims to raise awareness and funds. Tyler’s friends and family have organized a 5K with a one-mile fun run plus food and an auction. The runs begin at eight o’clock Saturday morning. Nielsen faces an uphill battle and in order to deal with the extremely high cost of his treatment, he and his family need help. Tyler, a 30-year old Iraqi war veteran, lost his job at ATK in May then two months later, while jogging, developed stomach pain. That eventually led to a colonoscopy and, later, he was diagnosed with colon cancer. “I just want people to know this can strike anyone at any time,” he said. “People need to be aware of the risk factors and if they have them, to be checked. I didn’t have any risk factors and there are really are no symptoms. It can strike anyone no matter what his or her age. “It started with some abdominal pain after running one morning. At first doctors thought it was stage-3 colon cancer but it was a lot more extensive when they got in to remove the tumor.” Since the surgery Nielsen has been through aggressive chemotherapy, which continues. Nielsen has never had major health concerns, not even during his deployment to Iraq with the 115th Maintenance Company in 2005. “This disease is not even part of my family’s health history. I’m the first in my family with it, it’s been a shock to everyone trying to figure out where it came from.” Participants in both the 5K and the one-mile run will receive a T-shirt and wristband. Refreshments will be provided. Cost for the 5K is $25 and the fun run is $15. There will be registration at Stevens Park Saturday morning or online at An auction and raffle will follow later in the day and a concert Saturday night.

Free News Delivery by Email

Would you like to have the day's news stories delivered right to your inbox every evening? Enter your email below to start!